Book Release: A Cub Among Bears

       In 2016, I was moving into a house for the first time, adjusting to a new job and getting used to Florida life. But something else was nagging at me, pulling loose threads in my mind and I just couldn’t let it go. My childhood memories burst through my mind, demanding to be written down.

       I started scrawling in a red journal, and as soon as I pressed pen to paper, I didn’t stop for months. I wrote about my little brother and I playing with mud in the woods. I wrote about what it was like to watch my older brothers wrestle in tournaments. I wrote about my dad protecting me, my mom teaching me.

       Soon I felt seven years old again, reliving memories about the swing in my backyard. I felt fifteen years old when remembering my high school. Writing became a form of therapy by rehashing a former life. My senses flooded with smells and tastes and noises as if I had experienced it that day and was just sitting down to write about it. I wrote with joy, most of the time.

       Other moments I recalled brought a twinge of pain to my chest – the relationships that fell flat or the anger and hurt remembered. The urge to wish things were different would bang around, pushing and pounding inside of me.

       As I sat on my porch after a long day typing up the memories onto my laptop, I had no idea that they would one day become an actual book. I didn’t know where thousands of words worth of memories would go. I did know that the stories flowed straight from my heart and that they were valuable, and that was reason enough to keep writing.

       Seeing my childhood memoir come to fruition is a miracle to me. I fought these words for two years, willing them into a readable formation that others would enjoy. I deleted and added sentences only to remove them again when editing the manuscript. Every chapter has been gutted and re-worked a dozen times.

       The book is far from perfect, and it is okay if you notice that. It also lacks so many intricate memories that I long to share but just couldn’t fit in. That’s okay too.

       My greatest prayer is that when you read this simple book, you laugh and remember your childhood. I also hope that it brings a quiet comfort to your heart. Something that gently reminds you to be thankful. To squeeze the juice out of life, savoring the sweet and learning from the sour.

       Thank you to everyone who has lent me a listening ear as I worked on this project. You helped give me the strength to keep going.

       Happy reading, friends!

7 Kids- Left to Right: 
(Top) Joe, Kim, Dan, Philip
Shawn, David, Jeff


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